Monday, August 24, 2009

Rochester Half Marathon

Saturday, August 22: Race day dawned sunny, cool and still. A runner's and a race director's dream. Jean, Jen and I were down at the hotel at 5:15 AM to get set-up. After registration was ready to go, I was off to the finish line area to shovel the acorns and goose poop off the end of the sidewalk. NOT a race director's dream. :-) But someone had to do it!

Registration was brisk. We had a total of 861 runners registered for the two events. At about 7:30 AM I was furiously entering last-minute registrations, dealing with doubly-assigned chip numbers, talking to my son on the cell phone coaching him through clock setup at the one mile point, trying to explain to a runner who "couldn't run without her music" that headphones weren't allowed and stressing out about getting the starter's gun to the start line by 8:00. A LITTLE BIT STRESSFUL. But everything got done (thank you Jen for entering the last few runners into the spreadsheet) and the runners were off.

Then it was time to dash around to the aid stations to get the Gatorade banners and table skirting displayed and photographed per our Gatorade sponsorship agreement. There was time to snap a few photos and cheer for the runners.

Before I knew it, the half marathoners were finishing. Mike Torchia won the race in a scorching 1:08:24 which K.C. said beat the course record on the old course, which was flatter. Many people ran very well ... including Rick Hlebain who ran a 1:29 P.R. :-) In the 5K, Tom Woo beat his goal of 18:00 by running a 17:53. Indeed, it was a good morning for many.

A huge thank you to the many volunteers who made the races possible. We couldn't have done it without you. We had a great team working on this event. Thank you Jen Woodford, Kevin Torgerson, K.C. Reed, Dave Morrill, Wally Arnold, Sonja Kranz, Judy Weller, Larry Pederson, Lin Gentling. And a REALLY huge thank you to Jean Murray who put in so much time making this event successful. It required lots of logistics, volunteer coordination, communication ... and Jean was at the center of all that.

Thank you to our sponsors: Subaru, Clements Chevrolet, Bread Baker Company, Think Bank, Running Room, Gatorade, Fuel Belt, Northgate Chiropractic, David W. VanDerHeyden, Alvin Benike, HyVee, Holiday Inn Express.

After the finish line area was taken down, I dashed home to shower and then left for St. Cloud for Sunday's Lakes Country Triathlon. I had dinner on Saturday at Granity City Food & Brewery with friends from the St. Cloud River Runners, including ...

Paul Ford, Denise Baxter, Kathy Carlson, Bonnie, Kayla and Ron Stock, Rick Hlebain and Tim Miles. We had good food, lots of laughs, and a very nice evening.

Which will lead to tomorrow's post ... more on the Lakes Country Triathlon.

Until tomorrow ...

1 comment:

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